Signs will be put in place to deter swimmers, and patrols will occasionally guard the areaAndrew Abbott/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

King’s College has banned swimming on Grantchester Meadows, according to a letter circulated to Newnham residents by Cambridgeshire County Council.

It will also be prohibited to go boating or paddle boarding or to barbeque on the meadows.

The letter states that this is due to the increased use of the area in the last 18 months due to the pandemic, which has “put pressure on the habitat and facilities” and “the long term future of the meadows at risk.”

It goes on to express concerns over the erosion of the river bank due to this increased activity, which would “obviously have long term consequences for the whole area”.


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Signs will be put in place to deter swimmers, and patrols will guard the area, the letter states.

Councillor Lucy Nethsingha states in the letter: “I know Kings have not taken the decision lightly, as they do not want to discourage people from enjoying the area.

“The signs (and perhaps occasional patrols) are being put in place by Savills/Kings College, in consultation with Grantchester parish council, and while Newnham councillors have been kept informed we do not have control over these decisions.”

King’s College has owned much of the land in Grantchester for centuries.